Trump has indicated through words and action time and time again that he doesn’t give a shit about nature, allowing big ag to destroy wetlands and streams, as well as letting hunters kill wolf pups and bears while they hibernate.
Now, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) is in Trump’s sights. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke has issued a directive to find out how much oil is located under ANWR and how much can be extracted.
In 2013, a plan was written that limited the scope of drilling for oil and natural gas in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska. Oil companies were quick to complain about these restrictions, and Trump’s administration was all too eager to listen.
“This is land that was set up with the sole intention of oil and gas production; however, years of politics over policy put roughly half of the NPR-A off-limits,” Zinke said in a statement. “Using this land for its original intent will create good-paying jobs and revenue.”
ANWR is a 19-million-acre reserve that was originally established by congress in 1980. Today, it is estimated that 12 billion barrels of crude oil sits below the reserve, which has drawn the interest of oil companies as well as politicians.
Environmental advocates are already pushing back.
“It’s hard to see how they could open up more land to development without putting at risk some pretty sensitive areas,” said Kate Kelly, the public lands director at the Center for American Progress. “Zinke might give lip service to balance, but this announcement shows the scales are tipped pretty far in industry’s favor.”
Regardless, Zinke is pushing forward with further fossil fuel development in the region, which will only end up costing the natural environment, and you, in the long run.
This website isn’t paid for by deceitful third party ads or paywalls. If you would like to support more stories like these, visit our store and pick up a sticker or a sweet men’s or women’s I’m With Her t-shirt. They’re made in the United States and for each one sold, we plant 10 trees.